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Thread: Need a CCD camera primer

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    The other issue about why people opt for mono chrome is that a lot of images want to do narrow band as well as RGB and mono chrome allows this. It is possible to do narrow band with RGB cameras but it is very difficult and requires very long exposure times due to the RGB matrix in front of the chip
    Another point that was made about cooling and the fact that apogee cool deeper than FLI, this is not true as if you compare the apogee and FLI 8300 models the apogee cools to 55c below ambient while the FLI cools to 60c below ambient. Apogee will only cool to 70c below ambient if you opt for the much more expensive D09 option back, FLI can achieve the same with water cooling. In their standard casing the FLI cools deeper and quicker than any other camera in a similar price range. FLI also has RBI (Residual Bulk Image) solution built in as standard
    Best wishes
    Gordon
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    Currently using a Tele Vue NP127/FLI (Atlas/Centreline/PL16803) prototype imaging system. Paramount ME. OS Falco guide scope and SX lodestar.

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  3. #12
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    Gordon makes a great point about Ha with Mono. I tried OSC Ha and found it to be grainy. I would guess 3x the data would be required from my Dome Site to match the Mono Ha results that I am getting.

    BTW, my Dome Site typically will hit about a Sky Quality Meter reading of 20.2 ,while my Cottage will hit about a SQM reading of 21.6 . And what does that all mean? A twenty minute subframe taken at the Cottage has the same look and quality as a thirty minute subframe taken from the Dome at Home.

    Want better subframes, go to a darker site. Want better subframes, but a darker Site is not an option, take longer duration subframes.

    And how does this tie into the Camera selection theme of this thread? I doubt that a really great [read expensive] Camera does much to improve a sky-limited Site. If there are problems with the skies at the Site you are stuck with, choosing your Camera, Mount and type of imaging that you chase, to work with what your Site offers, can save you some real money. AlanP
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    One more thing to think about before making a choice is to decide whether you are going to delve into narrow band or near infra red imaging or not. If you are only ever going to do RGB and nothing else then get a OSC camera otherwise go of a monochrome camera.
    By the way, looking at the original post the cost of ccd go far higher than the 12,000 USD mentioned, think more in the region of 40,000 USD for the top of the range EV2 and Fairchild chipped ccd cameras
    Best wishes
    Gordon
    Currently using a Tele Vue NP127/FLI (Atlas/Centreline/PL16803) prototype imaging system. Paramount ME. OS Falco guide scope and SX lodestar.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tjbdallas View Post
    Keith,

    I use a Meade DSI Pro II. While no longer in production they can still be found. On places like Astromart and Cloudy Nights, they go for around $400 +/-. If you want to see what they can produce take a look at my website under 'Deep Space Images'. Nothing fancy, and certainly not what a CCD camera in the thousands of dollars can do, but an inexpensive way to do AP.

    Terry
    I checked your webpage; nice images.
    rdemart44

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    I would like to add my 2 cents here if nobody minds.
    I have been using a modded canon 40D for about 3 years and have learned
    enough that I thought I would try CCD imaging.
    I purchased a used st 2000 xm w/ filter wheel and have been trying to learn to use it.
    In 1 year I have yet to get an image!!
    I have a manual but it is just too deep for me.
    I would suggest to anyone thinking about jumping to CCD imaging have a friend or someone that you can ask for help. Learning from a book is a very steep learning curve that I have yet to conquer, regards, bob
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    Default Which CCD camera?

    I want to get a mono CCD camera that's not to expensive. I'm interested in measuring positions of minor planets and I would also like to do some photometry using B-V filters.

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    Default Re: Need a CCD camera primer

    The insight that I have to offer as a guy that started with a osc is this.....I found out that this end of the hobby is great, and I was always anticipating my next image session until the moon stopped me. You can image with the osc with a slight moon or time your object so it's on the opposite side of the sky as the moon, but I always ended up with so much nasty green/gradient it was a royal pain to process. It was then I realized that if I wanted to Image in a full moon or partial moon monochrome for me was the way to go. With narrowband filters you can do just that. Basically I can image any time I want...weather permitting. I will still image with my osc as I feel the images from it are still very nice.
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    Default Re: Need a CCD camera primer

    I have a SBIG ST7-E with a CFW8 filter wheel.
    I use a QHY5 II as an external guider.
    This is a sound combination, and I get very good images from it.

    But the next problem that you will run into after you obtain the equipment, is to obtain the programming to process the images themselves.
    You can download CCDops from SBIG if you have one of their cameras, for free. It works well, but the better programs cost a bit more.

    I have processing programs that, combined, total well over $1000. And that's just the programs.

    I don't want to discourage you. As a matter of fact, I would like to encourage you, and am willing to help you anyway I can.
    It is a great hobby, and it's a "learning curve", but the results are worth it.
    I built my equipment up a piece at a time, until I had all in place.

    Give it a go, I think you will like it. I do.

    Rob C.
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